Tag: St. Hope Public Schools


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Watch: A Sacramento High School Works to Overcome Achievement Gaps


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Seven years ago, Sacramento High School was considered a dropout factory before the term was actually coined. Although 85 percent of its students overall from its original Class of 2003…

Seven years ago, Sacramento High School was considered a dropout factory before the term was actually coined. Although 85 percent of its students overall from its original Class of 2003 were promoted from 9th to 12th grade, that number is deceiving: Just 49 percent of Sacto’s black and Latino freshmen earned enough credits to make to senior year, while only 68 percent of white freshmen made it to 12th grade. Such numbers more than explain why the Sacramento City Unified School District voted in 2003 to shut down the school (then the nation’s second-oldest high school west of the Mississippi), convert it into a charter and hand it over to St. Hope Public Schools, a charter school operator cofounded by now-Sacramento Mayor (and soon-to-be Mr. Michelle Rhee) Kevin Johnson.

These days, the school — now called Sacramento Charter High and one of four charter schools on campus — is no perfect graduation haven. Just 58 percent of Latino males and 50 percent of their black male counterparts graduated with the courses needed to get into a University of California or California State university (versus 75 percent and 69 percent, respectively, of their female colleagues); a mere 40 percent of its white male students graduated with US/Cal State-qualified courses (versus 75 percent of their female schoolmates). It must still overcome its abysmally low promoting power and graduation rates for Latino students overall. But the school has succeeded in improving graduation rates for its students. This includes a 93 percent promoting power rate for black freshmen in its Class of 2008. It deserves credit for making strides, even as it must do better.

Watch this video on Sacto’s efforts to improve the quality of education for minorities and the poorest of students — and consider how American public education can make the strides needed for all children.

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